With spring break and summer holidays upon us, there’s nothing an airline would love to do more than fly hordes of passengers with their highest annual fares. For Ryanair, like many airlines, that won’t be happening this year. Due to border closures and en entire lack of demand, Ryanair plans to cease all flying until June, if not further.
“We do not expect to operate flights during the months of April and May at this time, but this will clearly depend upon Government advice, and we will in all cases comply with these instructions.”
Ryanair CEO Michael O’Leary has been a controversial figure as European airlines struggle to find solutions to the unprecedented crisis. The airline was strongly opposed to any bailout for UK airline Flybe, including legal threats to the government if any lifeline was handed out.
Now, facing massive cash losses, the airline is shutting down flights, for a period of two months. If you see a Ryanair plane in the skies during this time, it would be on behalf of a government seeking to repatriate citizens from foreign soil.
In a move to head off angry customers inquiring about rebooking options, the airline states it will be in touch over the coming weeks to outline options. For a full outline of your legal options, a few of which Ryanair may fail to mention in their email, read here.
With fares from €5/£5, Ryanair is an essential part of the European travel industry, providing jobs and accessible flying to passengers throughout the continent. The success of Ryanair’s model is one of the reasons legacy airlines such as British Airways, Lufthansa and KLM have been forced to compete on price within Europe.
Let’s hope O’Leary’s opposition to bailouts doesn’t effect their long term ability to be a positive part of European aviation, should things not resolve themselves in two months…